PARIS — Commercial satellite fleet operator AsiaSat of Hong Kong has formally terminated its cooperation agreement with GeoMetWatch to place a hyperspectral meteorological sensor on the AsiaSat 9 telecommunications satellite now in development.
The move, which was expected, follows a separation of GeoMetWatch from Utah State University, which designed the sensor. Utah State is now working with venture capital firm Tempus Global Data of Ogden, Utah, which hopes to raise the $150 million needed to build the 300-kilogram sensor in time to put it on AsiaSat 9.
Las Vegas-based GeoMetWatch has partnered with Exelis of McLean, Va., which has developed a competing sensor based on one it is providing for a major U.S. government weather satellite program.
In an April 16 notice to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, AsiaSat said GeoMetWatch had not met the financial conditions, including a convertible note, that was embedded in their agreement despite deadline extensions.
Follow Peter on Twitter: @pbdes